You can never stop learning to be a better writer. Even when you have mastered all the aspects of English grammar and learned all the words in the dictionary, your style can always be refined that little bit more. To become a better writer there are so many actionable things you can do today. Here are 10 tips to make you better writer.
1. Practice the correct use of commas and full stops (periods). The best way to learn this art is to read the work of renowned authors and journalists to see how they regulate the flow of thoughts and subject matters.
2. When writing a first draft don’t try editing it as you go. These two processes are entirely different and shouldn’t be mixed together. Drafting first, editing last.
3. As a rule, if a sentence sounds too long and awkward then it probably is. Read it back to yourself and consider splicing it into two separate sentences.
4. Keep reading and read some more. The more you read the better your writing will become.
5. Write everyday without fail, even if it is only a few sentences on a notepad. As Mark Twain said, “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.”
6. Read your work aloud before you publish. This will help you to identify awkward sentences and get a feel for the way the reader will digest the text.
7. Watch out for those tricky tenses. Tense confusion is a cardinal writing sin. Read your sentences back and ask yourself whether you are writing in the past, present or future tense.
8. When writing articles or blog posts start with a short snappy sentence of no more than 15 words. This impact will grab the reader’s attention and set the tone for a concise reading journey.
9. Decide from the outset whether you are using American English or British English. Whatever you do, don’t mix the two.
10. Start expanding your vocabulary by using alternative words. Being repetitive makes writing appear amateur. For help with this task use a good old fashioned thesaurus.